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Healing Mother Earth Through Zero Waste Living

By Annette Demeny

The EPA estimates the average family of four produce an astounding 17 pounds of landfill trash every single day! Zero waste living means aiming to reduce that landfill-bound trash to a bare minimum.

There are 7+ billion people living on Mother Earth and reducing our waste help us live within our planet’s means by using her resources more efficiently. This new way of living doesn’t happen overnight. It’s a process and one that I work at daily. You can to!

Before we dive into how to get started on your zero waste journey, it’s important to access what you use currently. This can be done by simply taking a personal audit of your trashcan. Yes, your trashcan. Track the plastic trash you generate; plastic grocery bags, to-go coffee cups (with plastic lid), soda bottles, packaged foods. Take note of the actual food waster as well. Do this for a week, then take a picture. This will give you an idea of how much plastic you use, how much food is wasted and what you need to avoid or replace.

Again, this may seem like a taunting task but like any habit, gaining awareness and making changes takes a little time but will soon become your new lifestyle. Mother Earth will thank  you! Below are just a few ways to aim for zero waste in your household. There’s so much more we can add to this list but let’s start out with some basics. This is a topic that I am extremely passionate about so you’ll see several upcoming blogs about reducing, refusing, reusing and recycling to learn more!

 

  • Ask for no plastic straw when eating out

 

  • Never leave your house without a full, reusable (preferably glass) water bottle

 

  • Think second-hand first when purchasing something

 

  • Swap your plastic toothbrush for a bamboo one

 

  • Buy food in bulk or with minimal packaging. Hit the farmer’s market for fresh fruit and vegetables with very little packaging. Find your local farmers market through Local Harvest.

 

  • Re-purpose stale bread. Make french toast, croutons or crostinis.

 

  • Try canning to preserve food

 

  • Bring reusable bags with you to supermarket. When purchasing produce, skip putting your one clove of garlic or three limes in a plastic bag. Use a reusable mesh bag instead. I, personally, feel that this is one of the most important changes you can make for the environment.

 

  • Meal plan to avoid food waste

 

  • Plant your own garden. Even if you don’t have space for a large ground garden, use planters or create a small raised bed.

 

  • Start a backyard compost

 

  • Collect rainwater

 

  • Ask for “no plastic” when packaging your online orders. Reuse any other packing materials, such as cardboard boxes.

 

  • Reduce your meat consumption. Try having Meatless Mondays!

 

  • Ask for a real coffee mug at a coffee shop if you intend to stay there

 

  • Vote with your dollars for a sustainable future

 

  • Focus on experiences rather than things

 

  • Try to shrink the amount you recycle. Zero waste is about recycling less, not more.

 

  • Repair items when they break in lieu of purchasing another one

 

  • Use household products in your pantry to create activities for children. Check out Laura Brands new book The Joy Journal for Magical Everyday Play for some really fun and creative crafts ideas using recycled products (cereal boxes, etc).

 

  • Store leftovers in glass, not plastic containers. Plastic containers release harmful chemicals into the food and liquids we store in them. Empty glass mason jars are great for storing dry bulk foods or leftovers. I use mason jars for drinking water too!

 

If only ONE thing…if you committed to trying ONE thing this week to move you forward in this new way of using, this new way of thinking, this new way of healing our planet, what will it be?

 

SFY Recommends ~

Attainable-Sustainable.net

The Joy Journal For Magical Everyday Play by Laura Brand

 

 

What’s your ONE thing? Let’s start the conversation below 🙂 

 

 

 

 

2 replies on “Healing Mother Earth Through Zero Waste Living”

I loved this article. It really helped me think about the little things I do every day and how such little differences in what I do could help the environment along with my health.
Thank You my friend.
Look forward to hearing more about this topic.

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